It was recently reported that a person’s prison time can be extended beyond what he or she was sentenced to in order to be committed as a sexually violent predator. David Lucas, a labeled child predator, was in prison serving a seven-year sentence for failing to register as a sex offender and was scheduled for release on parole on October 12, 2008. On December 21, 2007, corrections personnel completed a sexually violent predator screening and determined that Lucas met the criteria as a sexually violent predator. Eleven days before Lucas’s parole release date, the Parole Board placed a 45-day hold on Lucas in order to submit Lucas to a mental evaluation. Lucas challenged his extended hold by arguing that there was no showing of good cause to keep him in custody beyond October 12, 2008.
Under California Welfare and Institutions Code Section 6600, when a person is serving a determinate prison sentence in state prison for a violent sex crime, the State Department of Corrections and Rehabilitations can screen that individual to determine if he or she is a sexually violent predator. If it is determined that the person is a sexually violent predator, he or she will be referred to the Department of Mental Health and evaluated by two psychologists to determine whether or not he or she is likely to be a danger to society if released at the end of his or her prison term. Under Welfare and Institutions Code Section 6600.3, upon a showing of good cause, the Parole Board may place a 45-day hold on the person in order to conduct a mental health evaluation. In other words, a person can be held in custody even after his or her prison term has ended.
If you or a loved one has been convicted of a sex crime and is facing time in state prison, contact the Southern California sex crimes attorneys at Wallin and Klarich. Wallin & Klarich will help protect your rights and find the best defense strategy to prevent you from being civilly committed as a sexually violent predator. For over 30 years, our attorneys have been helping clients get probation or community service in lieu of jail time. Please call us at (888) 280-6839 or visit our websites at www.wklaw.com and www.wksexcrimes.com. We will be there when you call.